When you search the internet, you will find lots of maths tricks to help your children learn tables. Rather than being a help to your children they are often a barrier to the effort to learn tables in such a way that they can be recalled without thinking about the answer why we should Should children be encouraged to use their fingers for Maths problems?
Here is an instance of what I mean, a times tables trick that is fun, yes, but also a barrier to learning at the same time. This one is focused on the nine times tables, and your children use their fingers to get to the answers. The hands are held out in front with the palms facing away from you, functioning as your very own counting toys.
To answer the question what is two times nine this is what you do. To let you know in advance the answer to this is eighteen, but I’ll bet you knew that. Here goes; To use the trick, you count along from your left to your second finger and put it down.
How many fingers are you left with?
To the left of the finger you put down there is one, and to the right, there is eight. So, one finger and eight fingers. One and eight which is what number? Yes, eighteen, the answer to two times nine. Let’s do another one.
– This time four times nine. Of course, the answer is thirty-six. Let’s use the trick.
– From your left when holding out your hands put down your fourth finger.
– How many fingers do you have to the left of the finger you put down? Three!
– How many do you have to the right of the finger that you put down? Six!
– So, three fingers and six fingers. Three and six which is what number? Yes, thirty-six,
What is the answer to three times nine? Thirty-six.Easy? Of course, knowing the trick means that the answers to other nine times tables questions can be worked out using fingers. However, there are two problems with this as fun as it may be.
Your children can only use it for the nine times table. Your children have to do the trick to know the answers rather than knowing them without having to think. I remember talking to a friend of mine whose son is intelligent, learned this method, and wanted to use it all the time.Such an attitude becomes a difficulty when it stops children learning in a better far more efficient way.
How can you persuade your child to learn tables another way? Can you show them this fun game? One day my granddaughter said to me, let us play catch and call out the times tables. It turned out that this game was brilliant for emphasising to children that they had to learn tables properly. To play the catching game for the nine times tables successfully you must know the tables automatically.
You can’t play catch and use the Nine Times Tables Trick, can you? With this catching game, you can show your children how important it is for them to know the nine times tables answers instantly.